Navy Yard gunman cleared by doctors weeks before shooting

The gunman who shot and killed 12 people last September in Washington’s Navy Yard was cleared by doctors just weeks before the shooting, according to The Associated Press.

The AP obtained more than 100 pages of Aaron Alexis’s treatment and disability claim records from over the course of two years. 

“No problem there,” a doctor who had been treating Alexis for insomnia wrote on one of his records just weeks before he went on the deadly rampage. 

Three weeks before the shooting, government doctors asked him if he had suicidal or homicidal thoughts, which Alexis directly denied, according to the report. 

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In early August, Alexis told police in Newport, R.I., that he was hearing voices that were transmitted with a microwave machine. Law enforcement contacted the Navy contractor Alexis had been working for. The company got rid of his access to classified material for two days, AP reports, but then quickly restored it.

Later that month, an emergency room doctor at the veterans’ hospital in Providence, R.I., examined Alexis because he couldn’t sleep.

"Speech and thoughts clear and focused. Denies flashbacks. Denies recent stress. Denies drugs, cocaine, heroin, caffeine product, depression, anxiety, chest pain, [shortness of breath], nightmares. He denies taking nap during the day. Denies [suicidal ideation] or [homicidal ideation]," the doctor wrote.

"He works in the Defense Department, no problem there," the doctor also wrote.

In subsequent doctors visits in late August, Alexis denied possessing anything considered a weapon and denied having emotions of hopelessness.

Alexis went on his rampage on Sept. 16, and died after a shoot-out with police.

The AP obtained 114 pages of the gunman’s medical records after requesting them through the Freedom of Information Act a few weeks after the shooting. AP notes the government normally doesn’t hand over patients’ medical records. The Veterans Affairs Department, however, told the AP that the public interest in the massacre was much more important than Alexis’s privacy rights.